Who We Are
Historically, refugees have been denied a voice in discussions about their present and future lives. The result is often shortsighted and ineffective policies.
At a local and national level, some opportunities are available for refugee self-representation through participatory approaches. However, as the discussion moves into regional and global dialogues, spaces shrink for people with direct experience to exert influence.
From June 25th to 26th 2018, the first-ever Global Summit of Refugees, organized by refugees, took place in Geneva. This historic event brought together more than 80 refugee leaders from six continents to work on a long-term vision to ensure refugee policy is inclusive and effective.
As a result of the summit, the Global Refugee-led Network (GRN) was born to serve as a vehicle for greater refugee self-representation in all global decision-making: including the political, humanitarian and development sectors.
The network compromises of refugee-led groups in six regions, North America, South America, Europe, Africa, MENA and the Asia Pacific. It is governed by an eighteen-person steering committee, with three representatives from each of the six regions. Steering committee members represent the regional branches of the Network, which work autonomously under the umbrella of the Global Refugee-led Network to shape local, national and regional policies.
Our vision is to build a global network of refugees and refugee-led initiatives to bolster refugees’ ability to make meaningful contributions to decision-making processes. It aims to advocate for refugee agency and self-representation, strengthening the collaboration between the Network members, relevant global initiatives and other stakeholders, to guarantee positive changes to the global refugee architecture, including the development and humanitarian systems. Furthermore, we aim to enhance refugee inclusion on local, national, and international levels.
We are a group of refugee-led initiatives, networks, and advocates that works with and for refugees to
(i) increase refugee participation in shaping policies,
(ii) build refugee capacity to engage locally, nationally, regionally, and globally, and
(iii) strategically advocate for and promote inclusive human rights approaches to forced displacement.